I've been growing potatoes for many years and plant the usual way; I
plant them in a row, below ground level, and hill two or three times
during the growing season.
The other night we were watching a BBC series called "Foyle's War",
which takes place in England during WWII. In one scene, they were on a
farm where people were planting potatoes. They had plowed the field
with a newly acquired tractor into long, parallel ridges, about 2 feet
high and 3 feet apart, and were planting the seed potatoes along the
tops of the ridges. I guess the plan was that the plants would put
down roots into the ridges and produce tubers down there.
Would that really work or was this just poetic license of life on the
farm? I'd always heard that potato plants don't put out tubers below
the level of the original seed potatoe, hence the hilling to build the
ridges around the plants.
Stick it the ground or cover it with leaves or just let it be about .
Stuff that wants to grow will getting out of the way vs helping all
Chase The Clouds Away 4:52 Chuck Mangione Chase The Clouds Away
Jazz 100 30 11/5/09 8:40 AM
Garden in shade zone 5 S Jersey USA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM deals with Sugars
Perhaps they screenwriter was incompetent or subtly trying to say that the
planters were incompetent. During those times all kinds of people had to
substitute for workers who had gone to war so they didn't necessarily know
what they were doing to start with.
You are correct. Plant them in holes or trenches.
About 18 inches (45 cm). I piled it up little by little as the plants grew,
to within 5 inches of the top of the plants. When I needed potatoes, I just
moved the straw over to the side and picked some up from the ground.
But you wouldn't plant the seed taters on a ridge described by the OP
without the straw would you. The deep straw has the same effect (dark,
nutrients, moisture) as burying them, I think we are describing two ways to
do the same thing rather than opposites. I like the idea of not having to
dig them but I have plenty of soil and not so much straw.
No, I guess not. I was being conversational at this time rather than
helpful to the OP!
The deep straw has the same effect (dark,
Our soil is heavy clay, so it's hard to grow things that need a lot of
underground space. The straw method (actually lots of old mowed grass)
worked best for us. Now, if someone can tell me how to grow carrots
aboveground, I'd be very appreciative!
Not exactly aboveground, but this worked well for me with some pretty big
Make a couple of passes down the future row with the rototiller so the soil
is nice and soft; till about 3' wide (with my soil, "soft" is relative).
Then, walking to each side of the row, pull soil to the center with a hoe.
You should wind up with a raised ridge a bit over a foot high, and much
lighter than what passes for dirt around here.
Plant along the top of the ridge. Not as much work as you might thing; I
did a couple of 30-foot rows in less than a half hour each.
The roots did famously, and I might even get brave and try carrots next
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic
Zone 5/6 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
BZZZT! Thanks, but our soil is heavy clay, and rototilling it just compacts
it more. I never had "nice and soft" soil when I tilled it; it was only
after I stopped tilling and started to build my own soil with organic stuff
did it finally become plantable. I did try carrots in it back when it was
only clay, and they looked like little radishes!
Buckwheat, and rye can do wonders to clay soil. I grow it until May,
when I plant, cover it over with alfalfa, water, and wait two weeks
before I plant. When I pull weeds, nearly all the roots come up.
³When you give food to the poor, they call you a saint. When you ask why the
poor have no food, they call you a communist.²
I was watching a demonstration of a permaculture garden which was very
interesting and included providing habitat for predators of pests. Every
mandala had its own lizard "house" which was a pile of large loose stones.
The lizards were being encouraged to take up residence to eat snails and
slugs etc. All good. I had to point out that this idea was not useful for
me as I would get a couple of species of elapid snakes taking up the space
instead of lizards. For the same reason I have to be very strict on rodent
We get king snakes around here occasionally, and there may be some poisonous
ones that I simply have never seen, but I always move the straw back with a
rake anyway, and just pick up the potatoes instead of sticking my hand in to
our preffered method returns a 5:1 ratio is simple as see our site for
our instant potato patch, ths way we utilise winter lawn space instead
of doing any digging or using needed garden space used for brassica's.
the lawn returns quickly the next summer season.
happy new year
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